Dreams of Thee

Chapter 17

 

Hours passed, filled with quiet moments, tears, and talking. Vincent repeated, in many different ways, the truth . . . reassuring Catherine of what happened, what he had experienced through their bond. He answered all her questions with the simple honesty which was the core of his character, neither shading nor bending to soften the truth.

Throughout the day, Catherine slept for brief periods; as the day grew longer, the bouts of crying subsided.  Vincent was there, rocking her to sleep and chasing away the fears and nightmares.  Once, Catherine had awakened to find Vincent not at her side; the panic gripped her, and she felt again the pain as the razor slashed her face.

Vincent stepped across the threshold, his arms still bearing traces of soap and the dish towel slung across his massive shoulder.  Gathering her close, he held her until the sobbing stopped.

“I’m sorry,” she murmured against his neck. “I’m so much trouble to you.” His skin smelled of the slightly musky scent Catherine always associated with him, and she could smell the dish soap bubbles which clung to his arms.

“Never be sorry for honest tears, Catherine.  The tears are part of the healing.”

“Your hands, you must go rinse them!  You will start to itch if you don’t get the soap off quickly.  Please, go.  I don’t want to be the source of causing you further pain,” she pleaded.

“You would never knowingly cause me pain. Believe that, please. What happens to me matters not.”

“You matter to me.”

Vincent cocked his head to one side as he looked at Catherine, enjoying the look on her face as the words she had spoken echoed in his heart, filling him with happiness. He had been surprised when he had made the discovery several days ago of his own personal need to hear Catherine express her love, his importance to her.

He sat for several seconds, staring at Catherine with a silly look of wonder on his proud face.  His heart thudded in his chest then he forced himself to begin again his normal slow, steady breathing.

“What is it? Why are you staring?  Please, Vincent, go rinse off the soap.”

Reluctantly, Vincent rose, taking two steps toward the bathroom, then he turned, retracing his steps. He reached out to caress Catherine’s hair and murmured, “Thank you,” his words nearly inaudible, so softly were they spoken.

Catherine’s eyebrows knitted together for a second. “Thank you for what, Vincent?”

He paused in the bathroom door. “For caring,” he quietly said, and the rest of his words were lost in the sound of water.  Catherine slipped up behind him, wrapping her arms around his chest, her face pressed tightly against his back, and hugged him fiercely.

Vincent saw the faint trace of a smile appearon his face in the mirror, seeing his own shirt sleeves containing Catherine’s arms encircling him so intensely.  The strength, the intensity of her hug, the very feel of her body pressed against his back, warmed him.

“I love you, Vincent. Everything about you matters to me. I was incomplete until you came into my life.”

Catherine released him and moved around in front to stand beside the basin.  The smile on her face radiated through Vincent, filling his heart with joy.  He took the hand towel she offered and, after drying his hands, he took her hand in his and they walked into the bedroom.

Vincent’s footsteps carried them past the bed toward the living room.  Vincent knew if they stayed in the bedroom, he would never be able to control his rising emotions, the burning ache he felt. He wanted to make love to Catherine, but he was afraid to touch her. Within himself, Vincent knew he needed the healing completeness he found in Catherine’s arms when his body was joined to hers and their souls were one. The selfless part of Vincent’s love for Catherine, and his own personal fears, convinced him it was too soon to resume a physical relationship with her. Vincent tried to submerge his feelings, to find again the contentment he had always known in being with Catherine.

Vincent picked up a book as they passed the table, settled himself onto the couch, and Catherine lay with her head in his lap.  Vincent began reading, transporting them both to another world, a time when life was simpler.  He read on, his voice giving rich texture and character to the words, then Catherine stirred. “Are you uncomfortable?” he asked. “Would you like a pillow?”

“No. Yes. I don’t know.”

“Tell me what is troubling you?  Is the story upsetting to you?”

“No, it’s not the story; it’s lovely and you read so beautifully. I . . . .” Her voiced trailed away, and she avoided his eyes.

Vincent touched her lightly on the cheek, bringing her eyes back to his. 

“Tell me?”

“I want to be in your arms, to feel the slow steady beating of your heart beneath my hand, to feel your voice rumble through your chest as you read, but I’m afraid.” Her voice trembled as she choked back her tears.

Vincent’s heart stopped for an instant, and pain filled his eyes. “Catherine . . . .” his voice stuttered, and his slight lisp could be heard clearly, “what you feel is normal. There is no need to be afraid; I wouldn’t ask more of you than you are ready to give.”  He took a deep breath then hurried on, “If you wish to be held, then I will hold you.”

Catherine reacted instantly to the pain she saw so clearly in his revealing eyes. Unconsciously, he would stop momentarily to press his lips to her hair then continue reading.  Catherine finally relaxed against him, trying to accept the need to simply be held.

The story was very romantic, and Catherine was moved by the plight of the storm-tossed lovers.  She snuggled closer, her fingers curling and uncurling several strands of hair on his chest that peeked beguilingly from beneath his slightly open shirt collar. Catherine became lost within the story and fascinated by the way the soft downy hair curled around her finger.

Catherine pressed against his chest and kissed the warm soft flesh under Vincent’s firm jaw. The book silently slid from Vincent’s hand as he found Catherine’s mouth. Her lips were soft, warm and yielding against his. Catherine’s lips parted, allowing Vincent the full freedom of her mouth.

“Vincent, please let me love you, please.  I want to feel you warm and alive beneath my hands.  Oh, please.  Let me love you.”

“Catherine.” His voice was choked with emotion. “Are you sure?  I didn’t think you could possibly want to . . . not this soon.”  Vincent’s eyes were filled with the passion and the longing he felt.

“I want you. I want to feel you, all of you, inside my body.”

Vincent folded Catherine deeper into his arms, rose and strode toward the bedroom.  Catherine’s mouth found his as he lowered her gently to the bed. Her fingers worked over the closure on Vincent’s shirt, removing it. She ran her hands over his chest, enjoying the feel of his skin against her fingertips.

Vincent moved away only long enough to quickly pull off his shirt, and his pants, which landed in a crumpled heap beside it; slowly he lowered himself onto the bed.

Her fingers traced the textures of his face, lingering to gently caress his full lower lip then moving on to lightly touch his muzzle.  Vincent captured her fingertips, softly taking each finger inside his mouth, his tongue whirling over the tips until Catherine seemed to be suspended in space by her rising emotions.

Vincent released her fingers, bringing his mouth to rest against the hollow behind her ears.  He delighted in finding this particularly sensitive point, enjoying the way Catherine moved against his lips, moving away then reclaiming the spot with his tongue.  She shivered in his arms each time, rejoicing in the feel of his mouth.

Every place Catherine’s hands touched him, Vincent’s skin grew warm, burning from the flames she created within him.  Skimming lightly over his taunt sinewy shoulder, Catherine explored the texture of his arms, the counterpoint of the hard muscles and the soft, silky feel of his skin beneath the long golden hair.

He nibbled the corner of Catherine’s full lips, and she instantly turned, allowing him full access, enjoying the feelings as his tongue gently caressed her sensitive mouth. They were both breathless when Vincent finally pulled away.

Vincent rolled to his back, savoring the feel of Catherine’s soft sweet skin resting against his hips and long muscular legs.  Catherine tried to pull her weight up, fearful, even now, of injuring him, but Vincent’s large hands encircled the soft roundness of her buttocks, holding her firmly as a small growl of pleasure escaped his lips when her hips moved against him.

The feel of Vincent’s hands as he stroked combined with the fiery warmth of his mouth teasing the tawny rose peak of her nipple.  Catherine threw her head back, her mouth slightly open as she gave herself over to the pleasant sensations filling her body.  “Vincent,” she softly moaned as she drew in ragged breaths.

The joy on her face echoed through Vincent’s heart as he looked at her through his passion-filled eyes when he momentarily drew away from Catherine. “Yes.”

“Oh, please, don’t stop. It’s so nice, good, and pleasurable.”  She leaned forward, wanting to feel again the warmth of his incredible mouth.

Her hips continued to move against his, feeling him firmly beneath her as she rocked forward.  The fire within Catherine increased as Vincent lifted his hips against hers.

Fingers caressed, giving and receiving joy as they both sought to prolong their pleasure.  Catherine’s hands moved across him, teasing, as her breasts brushed against the soft, curly down beneath the sinewy muscles of his chest.  Her lips soon followed, leaving Vincent’s flesh burning as her mouth and tongue teased him.

Catherine came to the dark bruise, slowly lowered her head and began covering his injured flesh with soft, light, feathery kisses.  Vincent shivered, his fingers clutching the sheets, as Catherine’s lips moved across his throbbing flesh.  Her lips continued their path of absolution, causing his muscles to quiver, and her hands moved down to caress him.

“Catherine,” his voice came in a low growl, causing Catherine’s body to tremble anew, hearing the passion and love in his voice.  “Please. If you continue . . . .”

Moving up, Catherine sought his mouth as Vincent’s arms tightened around her, and he rolled over, covering Catherine’s body with his own. Catherine shivered violently at Vincent’s entrance, her green eyes blazing as she looked deeply into his ever-changing deep blue eyes.

Vincent paused for a moment, allowing Catherine’s body to adjust to his length, but as her hips rose to press against him, Vincent knew her desire equaled his own.  He moved against her, spiraling downward in the warm, honey-moist haven of Catherine’s body.

An ever-increasing blush covered Catherine’s face and neck as Vincent brought her closer to her climax only to prolong the racing emotions.  Her legs locked around his hips as Catherine’s desires raced onward, allowing Vincent the deepest possible penetration; her arms wrapped around his neck, her fingers buried in his hair as her hips thrust upward.  “All, Vincent, I want all of you.” Her voice was a throaty whisper against his neck.

Vincent could feel the forces within his body begging for release as he thrust more deeply.  His thrusts came rapidly as he felt the first shuddering of Catherine’s body beneath his as he raced to join her. His release came within moments of hers as wave after wave of intense pleasure washed over them, carrying them higher and higher into the light.

“Mine.”His voice came in a low guttural growl as Vincent leaned down to gently lick the fine film of perspiration from Catherine’s mouth.

Catherine held him as their hearts thudded against each other and slowly returned to normal.  Vincent moved, but Catherine drew him back. “Stay.”

Vincent found her mouth, kissing her repeatedly, easing her into the warm afterglow of their loving.  Slowly he withdrew, instantly aware of his own sense of loss of the completeness he felt while being within Catherine’s warm, welcoming body.  A smile teased the corner of his mouth, knowing he wanted to be there again, and very soon.

Lying on his side, Vincent slid one arm beneath Catherine’s head, drawing her to the curve of his chest as his hand stroked her breast.  His leg was drawn up possessively across her hips.

Catherine’s fingers entwined strands of long, fiery golden hair beneath her fingers as sleep claimed her.  Vincent smiled as he saw her eyelids flutter closed.  A deep sigh passed his lips as he relaxed into a deep, peaceful sleep.

 

Chapter 18

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